Security Deposit Requirements in Colorado and Denver
Security deposits in Colorado and Denver are governed by C.R.S. § 38-12-101 to 38-12-104. In particular, the statutes provide that a security deposit must be returned to the tenant within 30 days after the tenant surrenders the premises; however, the lease may extend this time period up to 60 days. If the landlord withholds any of the security deposit, an accounting of the money kept and the reasons why the money was kept must be given to the tenant within that same time frame. If the landlord fails to return the security deposit or give an accounting to the tenant within that time frame then the landlord loses all right to withhold any of the security deposit.
Once the time period has passed and, if the landlord has not returned the security deposit or given an accounting of why it was withheld, the tenant may sue the landlord to recover the security deposit. However, the tenant must give the landlord notice at least 7 days before filing the lawsuit and indicating the tenant’s intent to sue to recover the security deposit. If the landlord does not return the security deposit in full to the tenant within those 7 days then the tenant may recover 3 times the amount of the security deposit from the landlord.